Call for appeal on rape sentence

Gerard Vincent Byrnes leaves court after an earlier appearance in 2010.
Gerard Vincent Byrnes leaves court after an earlier appearance in 2010.

MEMBER for Toowoomba South Mike Horan has called for an immediate appeal of the jail term given to child rapist school teacher Gerard Vincent Byrnes.

Byrnes, 61, was yesterday sentenced to 10 years in jail for the repeated rape and molestation of young girls at a Toowoomba Catholic primary school between January 2007 and November 2008.

However, he could be released from prison in just six years.

Mr Horan raised the issue in State Parliament today.

"It must be appealed," he told The Chronicle.

"It has got to be appealed quickly."

Crown Prosecutor Sarah Farnden asked the court to jail Byrnes for no less than 14 years. Judge Sarah Bradley handed down a 10 year sentence.

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